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Gauteng Education offers to move pupil from Midrand school over hair incident

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The Gauteng Education Department has offered to move the 13-year-old learner, who’s been removed from Crowthorne Christian Academy in Midrand, Johannesburg for having dreadlocks, to another school.

Department Spokesperson, Steve Mabona has stressed that they strongly condemn the incident seen in a viral video captured on camera, where the teen and her mother are seen being pushed out of a classroom by a male school official, who accused the teen of violating the school’s new hair policy.

Mabona says the department is willing to assist the family with anything they will need regarding this matter.

“Its unacceptable and we really condemn this in the strongest terms and we are very clear with the school, the code of conduct is clear – that you can wear your natural hair and that was the case with this learner. We are not sure what prompted that decision. We offered the parents to move the child to a new school if they are willing. So, we are still in constant liaison – once she has decided on what is it she needs to do, then we will be in a position to work with her. The child would be traumatised, she needs assistance and that’s what we’ve committed to do as a department,” he adds.

Racism

A Member of Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) Gauteng Provincial Command Team responsible for Education, Frans Ngobeni, has described the incident where a 13-year-old learner has been removed from Crowthorne Christian Academy in Midrand, Johannesburg for having dreadlocks, as racism.

In a viral video captured on camera, the teen and her mother are seen being pushed out of a classroom by a male school official, who accused the teen of violating the school’s new hair policy.

The incident at the Academy has since conjured discussions about Zulaikha Patel, a teen activist who led a Pretoria Girls High protest against the school’s hair policy after she was barred from class for having an afro.

Ngobeni says the new school policy targets black learners.

” The EFF takes no kind to any racial discrimination against anybody regardless of the skin colour. We feel that this is a racist attack because its speaks more of a discriminating our young kids in particular – not considerate of the African culture, our hair and how we do with our hair. It reflects our culture you can’t punish our young kid for how they look like especially their hair. You can see this was a clear harassment to this young girl and her mother,” he adds.

Full interview with Frans Ngobeni:

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